The Many Faces of Administrative Adjudication in the European Union

Administrative Law Review, Forthcoming

55 Pages Posted: 8 Jul 2008

Date Written: July 8, 2008


Federal and state administrative adjudication in the United States fits comfortably into a procedural template involving some variation of an adversarial trial-type hearing conducted by a neutral decisionmaker and often controlled by an Administrative Procedure Act. Although the European Union (EU) engages in a huge array of administrative adjudication, there is no such procedural template like those in the US or, for that matter, the UK or the EU member states. Instead, adjudicatory proceedings in each regulatory sector are different from the others. The procedure for investigation and hearing is inquisitorial rather than adversarial, so that the hearing (if there is one) is viewed as part of the investigation rather than as a separate phase from the investigation. In a fascinating and unexpected common-law process, the EU courts have imposed some due process-like norms on this structure. This article (written as part of the ABA Administrative Law Section's European Union project) introduces the reader to the world of EU administrative adjudication. It focuses on six regulatory sectors in which adjudication occurs at the EU level rather than the member state level: competition, trade regulation, trademarks, food safety, pharmaceutical licensing, and state aids.

Keywords: European Union, Administrative Law

Suggested Citation

Asimow, Michael R., The Many Faces of Administrative Adjudication in the European Union (July 8, 2008). Administrative Law Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN:

Michael R. Asimow (Contact Author)

Stanford Law School ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Room 241
Stanford, CA 94305-8610
United States
650-723-2431 (Phone)
650-725-0253 (Fax)

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